L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


City gears up for two hectic days
PM's wife Gursharan to visit ailing sister today
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 16
The industrial city will witness hectic activity, with Gursharn Kaur, wife of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, arriving here tomorrow.

Family sources confirmed that Gursharn Kaur will visit the city to enquire about the health of her elder sister Thananter Kaur (84), who is suffering from hepatitis and stated to be serious.

SPG commandos have already laid siege to Thananter Kaur's residence in Sargodha Colony where Gursharan Kaur will arive.

Further, the police and intelligence agencies have been sent on a high alert in the wake of the visit.

Sources said the SPG teams also conducted a meeting with local police officials to chalk out a route plan for the visit.

Police officials remained tightlipped and refused to divulge any details about the arrival of the PM’s wife.

"Since it is a private visit, we have received strict orders not to share any details about the visit," said a high- rank police official.

Family sources said since Gursharan Kaur was on a private visit, she had refused to make use of the official chopper.

It is said that she might not visit the house of any other relative.

Special arrangement have been made to control traffic and it would be diverted during her visit.

Meanwhile, the relatives rued that earlier PM Manmohan Singh and his wife used to meet their relatives quite frequently, but ever since Dr Singh became PM, he could visit only once in the last seven years. Even Gursharan Kaur could visit only the relatives a few times.

Earlier they used to visit almost on every family function but after becoming PM, he could hardly attend any function, said a relative.

House turns into garrison

The relatives are also feeling the heat of the important woman's visit to the industrial town. The house where Gursharn Kaur is expected to visit has been turned into a garrison. The movement of family members has been restricted. The intelligence officers are keeping a close tab on everything taking place in and around the house.

Arrival by train, departure by plane

Gursharan Kaur will arrive by Shatabdi at 11:22 am and return by plane from Sahenwal airport.

Sources said if the bad weather persists, she might have to cancel her plan as the airport has no adequate arrangements for the landing and flying of a plane under poor visibility. Airport official said a lot depends on the weather conditions tomorrow. She would fly back in a chartered plane. KK Gill of agro-metrology department of the PAU said the weather would be clear tomorrow.


  • Arrival by Shatabdi: 11:22 am
  • Departure: 5:30pm from Sahnewal Airport


SGPC Poll: Mad rush for liquor vends
Gurvinder Singh

Ludhiana, September 16
Liquor vends in the city did brisk business on Thursday afternoon - an unusual occurrence - with customers coming in droves to stock up ahead of the “dry days” from Thursday evening till Sunday evening, which the administration has declared during the SGPC elections. People were seen carrying two, three or even more bottles before the vends shut down at 5 pm.

Chand, a liquor vendor, said was there was a big spurt in sales during the afternoon. “Liquor vends located in the Daresi and Tajpur Road areas had put up banners informing about the dry days a couple of days ago. There’s a huge rush at these vends”, he added.

Arun, another liquor vendor, said sales were brisk in the afternoon. "People bought more bottles today as they wanted to stock up for tonight and tomorrow, since the vends will reopen only on Sunday evening”, he added.

Sheetal Sharma, who works at a shop near the city’s train station, said liquor vends located near her home in Model Town were a big nuisance. "I’ll be very happy to see the shutters downed at liquor vends. The government must announce more dry-days and not allow liquor vends to open near residential areas”, she averred.

Bodh Raj, a bank employee who was carrying a couple of bottles in a black polythene bag from a liquor vend, said he could not live without downing a couple of pegs every night. "Spending three days without drinks would be very difficult” he slurred tone.

Another man said dry days made little difference. "People will buy what they have to buy, whether stocking in advance or otherwise. So what's the point of having a dry day?"



Ludhiana (south) in for a tough fight
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 16
With 74,114 votes, the Ludhiana (South) constituency is the biggest in terms of voters in the district and one of the biggest in state in the SGPC elections. This is a constituency, which would have one of the toughest contests of the district, as Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) candidate Balwinder Singh Bains would be contesting against Surinder Singh Ryait, an independent, who is having open support of Panthic Morcha. He is believed to have inside support of Cabinet Minister Hira Singh Gabria, a known opponent of Bains.

Both Gabria and Bains brothers, Youth Akali Dal district president Simarjit Singh Bains and his elder brother, SGPC member Balwinder Singh Bains, are known political opponents and have openly accused each other in the public.

During the rally in support of Balwinder Singh Bains, which was addressed by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Wednesday evening, Gabria did not go there. Even Mayor Hakam Singh Giaspura did not attend the function as Simarjit Singh Bains, who is a municipal councillor, opposed him publically.

Maximum voters of this constituency are Ramgarhia Sikhs, who have earlier showed their displeasure with Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), because a person from their community was not given a ticket for SGPC elections from the city.

While Surinder Singh Ryait is a Ramgarhia Sikh, Balwinder Singh Bains is a Sikh. Ryait has been claiming that he is having support of the Ramgarhia community, while Bains claims that Sikhism does not divide anyone on the basis of being a Ramgarhia or a Sikh.

“In Sikhism, all people are same and raking up this issue is totally against the principles of Sikhism. We have support of all voters because our family has been serving the area for a long time, while Ryait has never visited these areas before. He (Ryait) is not an independent candidate as he has full support of Gabria, which could be known from the fact that Gabria’s personal assistants, OSD’s and several other associates have been campaigning for him,” Bains said.

Earlier Ryait had rubbished these allegations and had clarified that he was not supported by Gabria.



Protest against SGPC chief

Ludhiana: After Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee president Avtar Singh Makkar used derogatory language for members of the Brahmin community, hundreds of members of Bhagwan Parshuram Sewak Sangh today held a protest against Makkar outside the Police Commissioner’s office here.

Recently, a video had surfaced on the Internet, in which Makkar was seen using derogatory language for Brahmins, former Akal Takht Jathedar Bhai Ranjit Singh and Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee president Paramjit Singh Sarna.

This issue was taken up by members of the Bhagwan Parshuram Sewak Sangh, who submitted a memorandum to the police and demanded that an action should be taken against Makkar for hurting their religious sentiments.

“We demand that Makkar should pay obeisance to Shivala Shangla temple, perform seva and should feel sorry for his comments publicly and in writing. And if Makkar fails to do so, we would oppose him as well as Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) in the assembly election. We would also hold protests during the SGPC election,” said Rahul Sharma, one of the protestors.



2,000 cops to be deployed

Ludhiana: The district administration seems to have made all arrangements for the Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) elections, scheduled for September 18. Out of 924 booths in the district, 294 are sensitive, while 56 are highly sensitive. So, to avoid any untoward incident during the polling day, the district administration would deploy around 2,000 police officials.

“We have made all the arrangements for the elections and I can assure you that elections would be held in a peaceful manner,” claimed Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tewari.

The police personnel deployed for these election have been given letters to join the election duty from Saturday onwards, in their respective polling stations.

There are 13 constituencies in the district, namely Ludhiana South, Ludhiana West, Ludhiana North, Ludhiana Rural, Mullanpur Dakha (general), Mullanpur Dakha (SC), Jagraon (General), Jagraon (General), Jagraon (Women SC), Sidhwan Bet, Raikot, Pakhowal, Payal, Doraha (SC), Doraha (General), Khanna, Samrala (general) and Samrala (general women).

Candidates from Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), Panthic Morcha as well as independents would be pitted against each other for a total number of 18 seats. Under the Ludhiana Police Commissionerate, there are seven constituencies.



Technical snag disrupts trains on Delhi-Ludhiana route
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, September 16
Rail traffic on the Panipat-Ludhiana section was thrown out of gear following a major snag in the overhead traction wires at the Gharaunda train station on Thursday morning, rendering one of the two tracks on the New Delhi-Ludhiana trunk route nonoperational for most part of the day.

As a result most of the ‘up’ trains (to Amritsar and Jammu from New Delhi) arrived in the city two to five hours behind schedule,

including the prestigious Shatabdi Express that was delayed by about four hours, causing a lot of inconvenience to travellers.

With trains on the Ludhiana-Amritsar and Ludhiana-Jammu sections running late by several hours, the passengers were at the receiving end, more so because most of them were unaware of the reason for the disruption in train schedules. Employees manning the inquiry counter at the city’s train station also had a tough time dealing with agitated passengers who were stranded at the train station for a considerable time.

As quite a few trains failed to arrive on the scheduled time, the waiting passengers were seen pushing and jostling to find room in the jampacked trains leading to scuffles and heated arguments.

The 12029 Shatabdi Express, which arrives in the city at 11:22 am, was late by over four hours while other trains including the 12497 Shan-e-Punjab, 12919 Malwa Express, 12471 Swaraj Express, 12925 Paschim Express and 14037 Delhi-Pathankot express were running late by one to five hours.

Like Sunil Malhotra, an executive in a multinational firm, many others traveling from New Delhi to the city in the Shatabdi either missed their important appointments and meetings or else their plans to travel back to New Delhi in the evening after finishing their business here had to be altered with no alternative options available at such a short notice.

Northern Railway officials claimed rail traffic on the ‘down’ line (Ludhiana to New Delhi) remained unaffected while saying the snag on the Panipat-Ludhiana section had been rectified and traffic restored by afternoon. However, they did not rule out the possibility of a cascading effect on the ‘down’ trains as well due to the corresponding train reaching its terminating point (the originating point on the return journey) many hours behind schedule.

"Trains on the Amritsar-New Delhi and Jammu-New Delhi sections may also be delayed, but so far there is no word about any train being cancelled," a senior railway official said.

Plans gone haywire

Tarlochan Singh, who had to wait for six hours at the Ludhiana railway station, said he had to reach Rajasthan to sign a land deal. "Now, everything has been delayed. I don't know how I will reschedule my programme," he rued. Shekhar, a railway employee, said had the trains been on time, he would have been at his home in Ambala by 6.30 pm. "It's already 7.30 pm and I'm still trying to catch a train to Ambala," he added. For Farooq who had to board a train for Delhi, it was a tough call as he missed an important party at his home tonight. Supriya, who had reservation for Shatabadi, was disappointed, as her schedule was thrown haywire because the train was late by four hours.



Thieves strike again, decamp with Rs 9 lakh from car
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 16
Watch out, the gang of thieves who sneak away with cash and valuables lying in cars is on the prowl in Sector 32, Chandigarh road, and surrounding areas. While the city police is groping in the dark and failed to find any clue in the Rs 20 lakh highway robbery case, the thieves struck again and fled with nearly Rs 9 lakh from the car of an iron trader here last night.

The incident took place at around 9 pm when Deepak Batra, a resident of Sector 32 area, was returning home after closing his shop located on the Gill road. While returning home, he carried nearly Rs 9 lakh in a bag and kept it on the back seat of the vehicle.

He said when he reached at a petrol pump located near the Verdhman Chowk, he was told by an employee there that the rear tyre on the left side of the car has deflated.

“So I drove the car to a mechanic located close to the petrol pump. After getting the tyre repaired, I sat in the car. When I was about to leave the place, I was shocked to notice that my bag containing cash was missing,” said Deepak.

He immediately informed the police about the incident. Batra told the police that he had no clue when and how his bag was stolen.

“I do not know when this happened. The bag was lying in the car when I got down of the vehicle to get the punctured tyre repaired,” said Batra.

While in another similar incident, thieves stole a bag containing cash worth Rs 50,000 lying in the car of Rajiv Mehan.

Narrating the incident, Mehan said he was visiting the registrar office located near the Samrala Chowk for the purpose of a land deal.

“As it was raining heavily, I left the cash inside the car. The private security guard was also standing there. When I returned, I was shocked to find that the bag containing cash was missing. I asked the security guard but he had no clue when the cash was stolen,” said Mehan.

The police has registered both cases and started investigations.



No clue of missing basketball player
Parents suspect honour killing
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 16
No trace has been found of the basketball player Ramanand, 19, who went missing under mysterious circumstances from the Kundanpuri Nagar area 10 days ago.

Ramanand’s parents have alleged that their son had fallen a victim of honour killing. They said Ramanand had a long telephonic conversation with a woman before he disappeared. The parents have got hold of Ramanand’s call details to prove their claim. The parents said since Ramanand went missing, both his phone number and that of the woman were not functioning.

Munni, Ramanand’s mother, who works as a maidservant in houses, claimed that her son had an affair with a married woman living in the neighbourhood.

She also claimed that her son had been killed and dumped somewhere by the family members of that woman.

Raju, Ramanand’s maternal uncle, said, “Ramanand left his house on September 6 morning and said that he was going to school to take his matriculation certificate. The school authorities confirmed that he had visited the school and had taken the certificate. But he never returned home.”

Ramanand’s mobile phone location showed that Ramanand was in Phillaur when he had the conversation with the woman for two hours, said Raju.

“She used to visit her parents and would call Ramanand at her house. I suspected and chided my son. But the woman kept on calling him,” said Munni.

Jairam, Ramanand’s father, who is a rickshaw-puller, said, “Even the woman has confessed before the police that Ramanand spoke to her. But the police has not yet registered any case yet.” Jairam alleged that the woman's husband has killed his son.

The family brought the matter to the notice of the police commissioner on September 13 but no action was taken.

On the other hand SHO Division No 4 Brij Mohan said the police had launched a search for Ramanand after the family filed a missing report and the matter was registered in the daily diary report (DDR).

The woman and her family members were not available for comments.



Women Entrepreneurs-v
Mixing art and business well
Minna Zutshi
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 16
Art and business may not mix well together. But dance expert Sangita B Kushwaha has found the best expression of her art through her dance school.

“To those uninitiated in the art of dance, it may seem that dance is all about aesthetic. But this is a facile view of the subject. Dance captures the essence of culture. Changing dance forms reflect changing social reality,” says Sangita, who has a doctorate in kathak.

She started “Sangita’s School of Performing Arts” in 2005 and since then it has been a journey uninterrupted.

Her unconventional approach to dance forms raised many eyebrows. For a city like Ludhiana that’s on the cusp of modernity, belly dance was not exactly an “appropriate” dance form.

“At my school, I invariably start with the cultural perspective of a dance form. I believe that theory aids practical. For instance, when I tell my students about the history of belly dance, they are able to appreciate it better,” she says.

Any art form loses its relevance if it’s stifled within the rigour of conformity, she adds. Perhaps, it was this “experimental approach” that acted as a catalyst in her dance school venture.

“Had I been a stickler for conformity in art, I would have been happy with my teaching job. I had a fairly cushy job of a dance teacher in a school,” she tells us.

But not all days are easy days when you have your own venture. Sometimes, her assistants, whom she trains meticulously, leave her school to pursue their own ventures. She takes it all as part of the professional hazards.

“I consider myself blessed to be able to earn from doing what I love to do. Not all are so lucky. I only hope that my dance school helps to clear misconceptions about dance as an art form,” she signs off.



Rise in petrol prices stuns residents
Charanjit Singh Teja

Ludhiana, September 16
In a year, the prices of petrol have increased for the third time. It has almost stunned the common man in the city. Petrol prices were Rs 65.22 in January this year, which is now Rs 74.50.

In January this year, oil firms had increased the prices by around Rs 3 per litre. Another substantial rise came over with a steep upward revision of Rs 5 a litre in May. Petrol prices were hiked for the 10th time since June 2010.

“The government is punishing middle class. Look at the prices of fruits and vegetables. Prices of all things will shoot up again,” said, Joginder Singh, a shopkeeper near Bhadhaur House.

“The government is trying to loot us. This increase in prices is happening so often. It is really hard to survive for a common man,” said Sita Ram, a railway employee.

“We are not benefiting from hikes, as these are always a cause of loss for us. We have to invest more but our commission will remain the same. Our commission is on litres not on price,” said Rakesh Garg, a petrol pump owner.

Prices of diesel and cooking fuel that are still controlled by the government, unlike gasoline, were left untouched.



Political parties up in arms against govt
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, September 16
Terming yet another increase in the price of petrol as a bolt from the blue for the common man, the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) today held a protest at Clock Tower Chowk, while the Communist Party of India (CPI) also came down heavily upon the Congress-led UPA government for this step which was bound to further 
fuel inflation.

Led by district president of the party Rajiv Katna, the protesting BJP workers also burnt an effigy of the UPA government.

Speaking on the occasion, Punjab State Planning Board vice chairman Rajinder Bhandari said people were feeling frustrated over skyrocketing prices of essential 
items, with successive increase in the prices of petrol and diesel adding to their misery.

"Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi ought to quit if they are unable to curb the rising prices and leave it to the incoming government to provide some relief to the suffering masses."

The BJP district chief Katna said during the past four months, the prices of petrol had been jacked up by Rs 8.47 per litre, which was absolutely unjustified and an unbearable burden for the common man. Punjab Minister for Health and Family Welfare Sat Pal Gosain chided Dr Manmohan Singh, saying the economic policies of an economist Prime Minister had failed. "The present UPA government has been reduced to a bunch of blood suckers. The BJP will take the fight against inflation and injustice being inflicted upon the people to the streets,” he announced.

Meanwhile, the district unit of the Communist Party of India (CPI) has rapped the government on the knuckles for its failure to bring down inflation and second successive hike in petrol prices.

Party secretary Kartar Singh Bowani and assistant secretary Dr Arun Mitra said th another hike in the prices of petrol has come as a shock to the people, who were already reeling under the impact of steep rise in prices of essential items. They said the Left parties had already warned the government against deregulation of prices of petroleum products which would give a free hand to the oil companies to raise prices at will without bothering for the interests of the common people.

The party further criticised the proposal to limit the supply of subsidised LPG cylinders.



CPI condemns Central government
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, September 16
The Jagraon block unit of the Communist Party of India (CPI) has condemned rise in prices of petrol by the Union government. Terming hike in the prices of petrol by the government as a bolt from the blue for common man, CPI district secretary Sukhwinder Singh Sekhon said hike in the petrol prices by the government would make lives of common people more difficult.

Sekhon was speaking to mediapersons after a meeting of CPI workers called on the issue of hike in prices of petrol here today. “The new hike in the prices of petrol would make the lives of common people more difficult, as they have been already reeling under difficulties due to exorbitant increase in the prices of other essential items,” Sekhon added.

According to Sekhon, the CPI had warned in the beginning that deregulation of prices of oil in the country will give free hand to the oil companies to raise prices at will and it will hit the common man hard. But the government took no notice of the warning of the party as a result the common people are forced to bear the extra burden.

“During the first term of the UPA government led by the Congress, which was supported by the left parties, there was some check on this, but since the left parties have separated from the government during its second term, there is no check on the price rise as a result the prices of essential commodities are increasing every month,” he said.

The party also criticised the government’s proposal of limiting the supply of LPG cylinders on subsidised rates to people. “The Central government will have to pay a heavy price in the next Parliament elections due to absurd and anti-people policies perceived by the government,” he added further.



‘Reduce VAT on petrol’

Phillaur, September 16
The Punjab Pardesh Congress Committee has urged the SAD-BJP-led state government to reduce VAT on petrol as done by the Delhi government to facilitate people.

Members of the committee, Parminder Mehta and Mastan Sigh, said VAT was being charged more in Punjab than other states, including Haryana. They said the UPA government was forced to increase these prices according to the international market, but the state government could provide relief to the people by reducing VAT. — OC



Traffic comes to a halt
Tribune News Service

A view of the traffic jam near the Domoriya Pul in Ludhiana on FridayLudhiana, September 16
There was a traffic jam near the Domoriya Pul at about 7 in the evening. Long rows of cars were seen stuck for about an hour. Auto-rickshaws, cars and two-wheelers were stranded on the road. The roads were all soggy because of intermittent rains throughout the day.

The traffic jam continued for about one hour. “It is not easy to wait in bad weather for one hour,” said a scooterist. Another scooterist rued that traffic jam was becoming a common problem in this stretch and that the authorities should take appropriate steps.

A view of the traffic jam near the Domoriya Pul in Ludhiana on Friday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma



Loud business talk on phone galls Shatabdi passengers
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 16
Passengers, especially the seriously inclined, elderly those not in good health, travelling in the Shatabdi Express from the city to New Delhi and vice versa have been feeling harassed by the seemingly endless and irritating phone calls made by traders and industrialists in the train. The latter discuss business nonstop on their cellphones without any regard for their co-passengers, making their journey miserable.

A senior faculty member of Panjab Agricultural University said on condition of anonymity he travelled in the train from New Delhi on evening and the journey was a "nightmare". "A trader from Ludhiana boarded the train at New Delhi along with me. After settling down he began discussing the business deals on his mobile phone and that too in a loud voice. I along with other passengers thought the conversation would end soon but it continued nonstop till the train arrived in Karnal and we were relieved he hung up at last. But then again from Ambala to Ludhiana the trader indulged in lengthy phone calls during the four-hour journey and made our lives hell. Even though I gave him a ‘dirty’ look but he cared a damn. After entering my home the first thing I did was to take a tablet of Disprin (aspirin) and rest for a few minutes. It’s bad that even after spending so much money on a Shatabdi ticket the journey becomes intolerable".

Shalini Gambhir, another frequent traveller to Delhi in the Shatabdi Express, said passengers must show due regard to the interests of other co-passengers. "Most such long phone calls are made by businessmen and irk the elderly and the seriously inclined. For a few minutes, one can put up with loud calls in a train but discussing each and every detail on cellphones that are continuously ringing and playing games on them with loud music on definitely makes a journey miserable. After all we pay more to get comforts but such irritating co-passengers aren’t bothered about others", she added.



English affecting vernacular language
Gurvinder Singh

Ludhiana, September 16
The more elite a school is considered, the more it feels to promote the culture of speaking English. Most of such schools prohibit speaking in the vernacular language. The schools also levy a fine if the students speak any language other than English.

“We are not against speaking English, but why should our mother tongue die a slow demise at the cost of English,” said Varinder Singh, a resident of Sarabha Nagar, whose children study in an Englsih school. “I was really upset to hear when my son was punished just because he spoke in Punjabi. If the schools are particular about speaking in English, they should encourage speaking in Punjabi and Hindi too,” said Varinder.

Although the state government has been giving directions and many organisations keep raising voice against such rules by the schools, but it has hardly made any difference. “Government’s directions are not going to make any impact until people do something and become conscious of the fact that how important it is to save our mother tongue. Language is a cradle of culture. Saving the language is of utmost importance,” says Charanjeet Singh, a resident of Karnail Singh Nagar.

“Because of the market driven world and English being an international language, it is now imperative to be good at it. While stress is laid on being proficient, vernaculars are bound to be relegated,” says Rohit Singh Bedi, an English teacher at Delhi Public School.

Kushal Arora feels the pinch of studying in such a school that kept him away from the language. “Your mother tongue is truly your mother language. I realised it when I joined college and was exposed to rich punjabi literature in the college library. During the schools,” he said. He lamented he had started looking down upon speaking Punjabi or Hindi during school. “But thankfully I was able get in touch with literature, but the students these days remain oblivious of the beauty and richness of our mother tongue.”



Financial management course a hit with students
Gurvinder Singh

Ludhiana, September 16
The world of numbers, capital markets, investment avenues, insurance, mutual funds may sound Greek to most of the people, but these youngsters in school have already experienced the thrills of online trading, have made business industry visits, given presentations, known about equity markets, acted like the board of directors, convinced the "prospective buyers about investing in their companies", made marketing strategies and rubbed shoulders with the brokering stalwarts and managed investment portfolios, demat accounts etc.

Financial market management is the hot new stream at secondary level in schools that is opening avenues to schoolchildren to the financial world like never before.

“Those who are aware of this stream is taking this up instead of opting commerce as comprises some of the subjects from the commerce stream but offers practical exposure to students about finance, equity, currency trading, planning about money," says Bhupinder Singh, head of department, financial market management (FMM).

The students can now take the broker exams, which were earlier the domain of the CAs and the MBAs. Capital market dealer and deriviative market dealer examination by the NSE is mandatory to clear. At the end of the course, students get joint certificate by National Stock Exchange and CBSE. "So you can easily work as a stock broker and manage financials," said Singh.

The NSE provides the licence to do mock-trading to each student and they send reports about the performance to the CBSE. "So the students know the ins and outs of the investments, equity markets, capital and derivative markets."

"The destination for the students taking up the course is MBA (finance), but here they understand the concepts and develop understanding of the financial world," he said.

"We've paid visits to Dell, Trident in Barnala. We're planning to go to Infosys office in Chandigarh. The students have met the management at Avon, Hero, Vardhaman. They learn about the life and play the role of CEO's, MD's in the assignments at the school and provide, study balance sheets and get practical exposure about corporate and financial world works," says Singh In an industrial training programme, an internship at Ludhiana Stock Exchange, about 62 students from MBA (Finance) and 8 students from the school attended the programme.



Paddling for future generations
Charanjit Singh Teja

Ludhiana, September 16
In today’s times when youths obesessed with flaunting their superbikes and expensive cars, there are young men who are committed to commuting by bicycles. They do it not only for their fitness but also to reduce vehicular congestion and pollution. Around 350 boys from SCD Government College and 100 from Arya College are paddling every day to attend the college.

Most of them prefer cycles to buses and autos because public transport is very time consuming on Ludhiana roads.

Arun Kumar, a student of BSc I year, said, “I used to come by scooter from Sleam Tabri to Government College. But I found it quite costly because of recent petrol hikes. Auto-rickshaw was another option but it is very time consuming. So finally, I decided to buy a bicycle. Now it takes only 15 minutes to reach the college free of cost.

Sukhdev Singh, a BA II year student, says, “My father bought me a bike when I got admission in the college. Now he has some health problem so I chose bicycle and gave him the bike. I am young and fit for cycling.”

Professor Ashwani Bhalla said, “A healthy choice of such a culture is helpful to get rid of pollution and vehicular congestion. I appreciate the students who come on bicycles. I am thinking to form a cycle rider club in the college to motivate other students and teachers.”



Ministers ask engineers to adopt innovative methods
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, September 16
With an intent to enable the state government face the financial constraints, engineers from various government departments vowed to bestow their full potential for adopting innovative methods to undertake maximum development with optimum use of resources at their disposal.

Oath was taken in response to a call given by the ministers of Punjab government, namely Janmeja Singh Sekhon, Parminder Singh Dhindsa and Hira Singh Gabria, during the annual Engineers’ Day function organised here yesterday.

Paying tributes to the legendary engineer, Sir M Visvesvaraya, the speakers called upon the engineers to follow guidelines propounded by the Bharat Ratan awardee, who was internationally recognised for his genius in harnessing water resources.



youth fest
College heads vow to maintain sanctity
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 16
College principals hosting youth festivals being organised by Panjab University, Chandigarh, undertook an oath to do their best to enable the department of youth welfare of the university achieve its target of promoting and preserving cultural heritage of the state. The oath was taken during a meeting of heads of various institutes held at the Bhutta College of Education here today.

Dr SM Kant, director of the department of youth welfare, PU, said managements of all colleges represented by the their principals had vowed to maintain the sanctity and respectability of the institute of youth festivals, which had since emerged as the major mode to preserve and promote the rich cultural heritage of the state.



Hitachi keen to set up monorail project in Ludhiana
MC tells company to conduct detailed survey of city
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 16
After Tata Reality and Infrastructure Ltd, Hitachi India Pvt Ltd has shown interest in setting up a monorail project in the city. The company officials visited the city yesterday and held a meeting with Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) officials in Zone D office.

MC officials told Hitachi officials to conduct a detailed survey of the city and submit a report before the civic body within 45 days.

“We are impressed with the project, but we want the company to conduct a detailed survey and report back how this project would be beneficial for our city. Every city has its own needs and problems, so if we talk about this project, we should at least have something, which tells us that what is the monorail requirement and how it would be beneficial for our residents,” said MC officiating commissioner Malwinder Singh Jaggi.

Senior Deputy Mayor Parveen Bansal, who was also present during the meeting, said that Monorail could be beneficial in old city areas, which would be out of reach of Metro Rail project.

Jaggi too discussed that if the city is having a monorail project, it could be used as a feeder for Metro Rail project, which is already in the pipeline.

CV Kamesh, senior general manager, Hitachi India Pvt Ltd, said that monorail costs 35 per cent less compared to the metro rail project.

In November last year, officials from Tata Reality and Infrastructure Limited had evinced interest in setting up a monorail project in the city. A company official named Manish Tripathi had visited the city and had talks with the then Senior Town Planner Balkar Singh Brar and other MC officials as well. They had also taken a photocopy of the detailed map of the city from Town Planning section.

Brar said that after his meeting, the company officials did not submit any report and never contacted the civic body later.

Tata officials had given a presentation before deputy CM Sukhbir Badal on monorail project. The deputy CM had asked the then LMC commissioner AK Sinha to coordinate with the Tata officials to work out a concrete plan for a detailed discussion.



Public hearing by PPCB on September 20
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 16
The Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) would be organising a public hearing regarding setting up of a solid waste management plant at two sites of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) in Jamalpur and Jainpur villages on September 20.

In a press release issued this evening, MC Assistant Commissioner AS Sekhon informed that all city residents could take part in these hearings.

“If any person has any objections or want to give suggestions regarding the setting up of the solid waste management plant, they can come at the public hearing at Jainpur village, which would be held at 10.30 am or at the hearing at the sewerage treatment plant, Jamalpur, which would be held at 3.30 pm on September 20. Even if any person wants to see the draft environmental impact agreement study report, he can come and see it in my office on any working day,” said Sekhon.



Constant rain brings town to a standstill
Shopkeepers suffer heavy losses as rainwater enters shops, damages goods
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, September 16
The constant rain has literally brought the town to a standstill. The heavy rain has not only made lives of commuters difficult, work of businessmen, shopkeepers and traders has also been badly affected.

The poor drainage system has worsened the situation further, as rainwater has started entering houses in the lower areas of the town.

Besides this, the rainwater has also entered shops on different roads, thus causing heavy damage to the goods worth thousands.

The worst hit are shopkeepers at the Old Grain Market, Raikot Road, Old Sabzi Mandi Road and Sadan Market where not a single shop was spared by the rainwater. According to shopkeepers, they have suffered heavy losses due to rainwater entering their shops and damaging goods stored in their shops.

Terming MC officials responsible for the mess, the shopkeepers said the MC while laying interlocking tiles on the roads did not make proper arrangements for drainage due to which the water is entering their shops.

“We are forced to shift our goods to other places to save them from damaging. The MC had laid only 6-inch wide pipes for draining water from roads, which is now proving useless. If the MC had installed wider pipes while constructing the roads, the situation could have averted,” said Hari Om, a shopkeeper.

Meanwhile, the prediction of moderate to heavy rain in the region in the coming two-three days by weather experts has increased the problems of shopkeepers and businessmen further.



pau notes

PAU toxicology lab granted accreditation

Ludhiana: National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories has granted accreditation to the toxicology laboratory in the department of entomology, Punjab Agricultural University (PAU). Dr SS Gosal, PAU director of research, said the laboratory provides a service for analyzing samples of water, vegetable, rice, milk, pulses and animal feed. Head of the department of entomology, Dr Balwinder Singh, disclosed, “At present, two major national-level research projects are in operation in the lab which include "All India Network Project on Pesticide Residues (AINPPR)" and "Monitoring of Pesticide Residues at National Level (MPRNL).”

Maize process to remain firm: Dr Sidhu

The continuing gap between the demand and supply of maize worldwide will keep its prices firm in the international markets in near future, says Dr JS Sidhu, professor of Economics and incharge Agricultural Market Intelligence Centre (AMIC) at Punjab Agricultural University. Dr Sidhu said the global maize production and consumption was estimated at 824 and 846 million tons (mt), respectively, during 2010 to 11 with a carry over stock of 126 mt. During 2011-12, the production and consumption of maize was likely to increase further to 849 and 858 mt, respectively, with a decline in stock to 118 mt. Commenting upon the Indian maize, Dr. Sidhu added that area, production and productivity of maize was increasing and country will be able to export maize soon. During 2010-11 the country is estimated to produce 20.23 mt of maize from 8.7 mt.

Tips on cultivation of peas given

“Peas is an important winter vegetable, which is rich in protein, carbohydrate, vitamins A and C. Growing of early maturing pea varieties fetches higher market prices,” highlighted vegetable experts of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU). Providing useful tips to farmers about successful cultivation of peas, the experts on Wednesday told it required temperature of 20-25 degrees Celsius for optimum germination. The high-temperature conditions prevailing at the time of planting results in build-up of wilt and stem fly complex, which further results in unacceptable crop stand and yield losses. Hence, early sowing of peas is recommended in those areas where there is slow transition from cool to warm weather, added the experts. Dr PS Brar referring to its cultivation told the farming community that the best time of sowing early varieties of peas was in the first week of October.

‘Monitor cotton fields twice a week’

Cotton is an important kharif crop of Punjab, grown over an area of 5.11 lakh hectares with an annual production of 20.06 lakh bales during 2009-10. Saying the attack of insect-pests was a major limiting factor to its profitable production, PAU experts of the department of entomology told farmers that various integrate pest management (IPM) strategies have been developed and recommended for cost effective and efficient management of the sucking pests’ cotton. The management of important sucking pests of cotton like whitefly, jassid, mealy bug and aphid was important to get the full yield of Bt and non-Bt cotton hybrids/varieties. Dr Jagdev Singh Kular asked the farmers to monitor their cotton fields twice a week and record the population/infestation of sucking pests on a few randomly selected plants. PAU entomologists while giving tips for the management of mealy bug asked the farmers to regularly monitor cotton fields and mark plant/rows infested with mealy bug. — TNS



Ludhiana scan

CM’s effigy burnt

Members of the Unemployed Linemen Union burnt Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal’s effigy outside the inter-state bus terminal here on Thursday. Jagtar Singh Mahinangal, district general secretary, said if the decision of releasing the merit list is not taken, hunger strike by the linemen will continue and so will the attempts to gherao the Chief Minister again.

Rap album released

A Punjabi rap album titled, “No Mercy”, by rapper Perry Parrot was released here on Thursday. According to Ranjit Dhaliwal, a producer, the album has 11 rap songs. The album has been made keeping the new generation in mind.

Photography exhibition

Drishtikon 2011, a photography exhibition, by city-based Ranjodh Singh and TPS Sandhu is coming up in New Delhi September 17. The preview of the exhibitions was organised at Artmosphere Gallery the Ferozepur Road where a multimedia presentation was shown. The exhibition will be inaugurated on at Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre in New Delhi.

Engineers’ day

The 44th state-level programme on Engineers’ Day was organised here on Thursday. Irrigation Minister Janmeja Singh Sekhon was the chief guest. While addressing the engineers, Janmeja said, “Engineers play an integral role in the development of the country. Engineers from various departments have contributed a lot to change the face of Punjab.”

— Tribune Reporter



College notes

NSS volunteers visit old age home

Ludhiana: NSS unit of Khalsa College for Women, Civil Lines organised a visit to Nishkam Seva Aashram, an old age home, situated at Daad Village here on Friday. As many as 55 NSS volunteers visited and interacted with about 38 aged people. The visit was an attempt to inculcate a sense of selfless service towards the less fortunate people. The idea behind the activity was to make the young volunteers aware of the pain of loneliness which these old people experience.

Army - student interaction

Lt Col Ashish Katoch, visited GNDEC campus for motivation talks with the students of pre-final year here on Friday.

He visited the campus in the context of the drive to be conducted on September 22.

Katoch, addressed the students and showed a presentation encompassing everything from the various entry procedures and other major details of life in the army.



Biz clips

MSME meet organised

An MSME meet was organised at Indian Overseas Bank, Industrial Area branch on Wednesday. The meet was presided over by chief regional manager Parvesh Kapoor. He interacted with all MSME customers of the branch. Kapoor and Mukesh Kumar, chief manager and Awakash Sinha, senior manager discussed schemes of the bank for the MSME customers. On behalf of the bank, Parvesh Kapoor assured all MSME customers that their genuine financial needs would be taken care of. He said the bank had a comprehensive and liberal lending policy to the MSME customers. He said that the bank's main objective was to make available adequate and hassle-free credit facilities to the MSME sector, to give more thrust to micro and small enterprises.

New plywood range

Vidhata Group has planned to launch InterWood Plus, their premium product range in Punjab, shortly. InterWood Plus, better known as “Ply Ka Boss” in the southern and western parts of India, is triple-powered plywood with the power of extra compression system, dual temperature pressing and SLC. Ashok Juneja, chairman, Vidhata Industries, in a press statement on Wednesday, said: “InterWood Plus is our engineered, hybrid plywood range that surpasses the most stringent tests and establishment benchmarks in longevity and durability.” The product range consists of hybrid commercial plywood as well as block board along with marine plywood, gurjan, flexible plywood, flush doors, decorative doors and shuttering plywood varieties. — TNS



Drug peddler kingpin arrested

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 16
The Dehlon police has claimed to have arrested the kingpin of a gang that has been selling psychotropic and other drugs to students of colleges and youths of other areas for years.

The police also claimed to have seized 2.6 kg of opium and a motorcycle from the accused, identified as Tirlok Singh, of Fattawala village in Muktsar district.

The accused was arrested when he was going to supply a consignment of opium to a drug peddler whose identity was yet to be ascertained. He was intercepted near Alamgir village on the Ludhiana-Malerkotla road. Investigations revealed that Gurpreet had brought the material from a neighboring state at the rate of Rs 35,000 per kg to sell it to another dealer at the rate of Rs 70,000 per kg. — OC



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